OF COURSE YOU KNOW
THIS IS NOT CHRISTINE
I go in Nov 2 for an orthodontic evaluation.
Sometime after the first of the year, the top teeth need braces to pull the two front "chipmunk teeth" back and to pull forward the two on either side of the two front teeth, to even 'em up.
The metalmouth: The braces are a desirable yet not totally necessary option ~ and in fact, he wasn't gonna mention the braces again because so many people are squeamish about being seen with 'em, but I made sure to bring up the subject because I think they'd be a trip ~ in the early 60's when I was a pre-teen I had honkin' big frankenstein braces for 2 years ~ and, unlike everyone else who feels the need to "fit in," I've always grooved on weird things that "set me apart" from other boring "normal" people ~ such as the bright red hair, the glasses, being so short. In fact, if they try to suggest the "invisible" type of braces, I'll be acting disappointed.
~ then, with the front teeth nicely aligned, the actual reconstruction job will be much, much easier and much, much nicer-looking. So braces it will be. *giggle*
The real big main job: Apparently my teeth are basically very strong, but over the years I've ground them down so badly (during my sleep, probably), making my teeth so "short" it makes my bite so shallow my cheeks have started to sag into jowls. You know, like when an extremely old coot takes out his dentures? I've been wondering why my face has started looking so creepy, and never thought to blame my teeth! (Over the past several years, I've had to pick and choose over many photos to find one that doesn't make me look like Jabba the Hutt.) Mr. dentist wants to "open my bite" by lengthening my teeth (building them up) and then cap them all in one morning's work ~ we have to do it that way, or I'll have short teeth in some areas and long ones in others ~ you really can't chew that way, y'know? Hahaa.
Plus I've had TMJ problems for some years, and that's also caused by the "short teeth" ~ because the jaw joint doesn't push up against the main skull anymore, it inappropriately pushes BACK and causes inflammation of the joint; hence the TMJ. Which in turn, having to hold my head a certain way to sleep comfortably, causes more tooth grinding while asleep.
The worst thing is that the teeth have been ground down to such an extent that the dentin is showing, and if I let it go much longer, the nerves will expose, and then I'll be begging for root canals in them one by one, until they're all capped. But, since the teeth are too short, the caps (done one by one) will of course still make my teeth too short for my mouth, and since my teeth are out of alignment and leaning weird ways (unless you're looking real close my teeth actually look normal, but aren't), I'm gonna lose them all anyway. The easy way would be to just yank them all and wear dentures.
If you've ever known anyone with dentures, you know how miserable even the best ones can make your life. When you get into your 70's and 80's your digestion goes pretty much all to hell anyway, and even with the best false teeth, you end up eating only bland soft crap. What fun.
My parents are in their mid-80's and still have their own teeth ~ repaired in different ways, capped, etc, but their own nevertheless. At their age they, of course, have to avoid most spicy foods, but they still can chow down on steaks, raw veggies, etc.
However, my next younger brother neglected his teeth to the extent that the resulting blood infection consequently caused emergency heart surgery and loss of nearly all his teeth. This is what freaked me out and got my butt into the dentist's office for the first time in nearly five years... and just in time, apparently. So, yay.
NOTE: For those who haven't read it before, the above "This" link also includes a bonus of several Brian images, and some "interesting" comments/replies afterwards.
The sparkling results: Mr. dentist says that, as basically (genetically) healthy as my teeth are, they will last me all my life, even if I live to be over 100. ~ IF we can get my bite fixed and the caps on to prevent further grinding ~ and the bonus will be that the face will be less jowly and the TMJ pain will go away. And my teeth will be white and straight, and I won't feel the subconscious need to hide my smile behind my hand (which I wasn't aware I was doing until mr. dentist man pointed it out).
I didn't used to give a shit about this stuff until the past year or so... I was content to live and die, make sure Stephy was happy and on her own, then I just wanted to fade away into nothingness. I didn't care.
However, thanks to my overwhelming devotion to my campaign for Eppy, all this has become kind of important. I want to be as presentable as possible for Liverpool 2008, if my dream comes true. I mean, what if I meet one or more of the people who knew Brian or are related to him? Isn't it strange and wonderful that, even 39 years after his death, Bri is continuing to indirectly improve lives.
From Beyond The Grave
Still Helping Lame People Appear Acceptable
And now the bad news.
The financial damages: In all, it will end up costing in the neighborhood of $25 grand.
*Sound of an eppylover hitting the floor*
With the braces option, it will be $4-5 thou more.
l'Ogre looks at me, huffs and says, "Well, I hope YOU can afford it."
His dental insurance only pays $1,000/year per family member.
Mr. dentist is doing his best to cut my costs (right now I've been paying about 1/4 of what they usually charge for some of the procedures, such as deep-root cleaning), all the co-pays and uncovered expenses are going on my "CareCredit" card, and he's going to "call in some favors" to try and make the orthodontia more affordable. It would break his heart (and mine) if we were to just go the easy route which leads to dentures.
This is the first dentist I've ever found that I actually liked so much.